If you really want to get down to what is wrong with Portland, Oregon, look no further than those who have been elected to run the city.
Sure, somebody voted for those really bad leaders, but Portland is a city that has no leadership, all the same. A more accurate description of Rip City officials would be elected protestors.
Portland is a mecca for the aggrieved. During its 55th consecutive night of riots and protests on Wednesday, Portland’s Mayor, Democrat Ted Wheeler, was actually among protestors demanding an end to whatever it is they are protesting at this point.
CBS News reported Wheeler was inundated with tear gas from the federal troops who were attempting to protect government property, as Wheeler and other officials refuse to enforce the rule of law.
Wheeler — who stood next to leftist rioters Wednesday as they hurled burning trash at federal property and officers — is sadly also the city’s police commissioner. Those duties come with being elected mayor of the city.
WARNING: The following videos contain vulgar language that some viewers may find offensive.
Someone in Portland’s government sees Wheeler for the ineffectual leader he is and wants to strip the role of commissioner of the Portland Police Bureau from him.
Do you support federal agents being sent in to protect cities besieged by rioting?
Sadly, that person, Portland City Commissioner Jo Ann Hardesty, might be more radical than Wheeler.
Hardesty blames the city’s violence on Wheeler and police officers, and not the hordes of angry vandals, arsonists and other miscreants.
She issued a statement last week demanding Wheeler’s powers as commissioner of the police department be ceded to her amid months of lawlessness.
But she isn’t hoping to take control of the department to restore order for the people in the city who are being held hostage by the perpetual chaos.
She wants control over the department so she can further nullify its powers to protect and serve the people of Portland.
“Last evening the best of Portland was on full display,” Hardesty said her statement. “On short notice, thousands of Portlanders came out to exercise our constitutional right to free speech and peaceful assembly.
“This was a united call to end the occupation of our city by federal troops and demanding an end to the aggressive violence being perpetrated on our city by both federal troops and the Portland Police,” she continued.
“We had impassioned speakers sharing a variety of perspectives and opinions,” she said. “We lit candles. We sang. We danced with the incredibly talented Portland Hip Hop community. We talked about the work ahead and how we are going to re-imagine community safety.”
Hardesty went on to attack acting DHS Secretary Chad Wolf and federal agents, whom she referred to as “45’s goon squad,” before calling for the police department to be hers.
“I demand action right now,” she wrote. “Mayor Wheeler, if you can’t control the police, give me the Portland Police Bureau.”
Wheeler did not turn over the department to Hardesty after her July 18 letter, and tweeted on Monday that he would “continue to serve as Police Commissioner through this time of transformation.”
Wheeler has also pledged to partially defund his own officers.
Oregon Public Broadcasting reported last month that Wheeler dissolved his city’s Gun Violence Reduction Team.
“This is our opportunity to reimagine every aspect of policing,” Wheeler said. “This is a time that calls for bold and, at times, as I’ve said, uncomfortable reforms.”
Hardesty at least agreed with Wheeler on that decision.
On the department’s now-former gun violence unit, Hardesty told Oregon Public Broadcasting, “They couldn’t find a gang member if they fell over one.”
Still, Hardesty wants police powers further curtailed.
But while Portland’s terrible leaders engage in infighting, citizens of the city are paying.
Journalist Andy Ngo, who reports from the city on social media nightly, does a very good job of documenting the turmoil in Portland.
The Oregonian reported that in the first 13 days of July, police in Portland had already responded to 42 shootings.
That is a dramatic spike, as Portland averaged 32 shootings in a month last year, never going over 40 in a month.
Now that federal agents are involved in battling nightly riots, Portland’s leaders want Wolf and other federal officials to leave the city.
Wolf, though, says that isn’t going to happen.
While Democrats and the media attempt to mislead the country about the situation in Portland, President Donald Trump, Wolf and the agents on the ground are committed to protecting public property and restoring order, even if it means they have to subvert a pair of local officials engaged in a standoff about who is more woke.
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